The state of the Detroit Lions’ secondary has gone from bad to worse, and the timing isn’t good.
The Lions already were shaky on the back end, but now they’re depleted at cornerback assuming Chris Houston (toe) and Darius Slay (knee) are unable to play in Monday night’s game against the Baltimore Ravens at Ford Field.
Houston and Slay were both listed as doubtful on the club’s official injury report released Saturday.
Running back Reggie Bush (calf) and defensive end Ezekiel “Ziggy” Ansah (shoulder) are questionable.
The Lions (7-6) are approaching desperate times after losing three of their last four games. They are tied with Chicago for first place in the NFC North with three games remaining.
Rashean Mathis, a 10-year veteran, will start at one cornerback spot and likely will be joined by Jonte Green if Houston and Slay can’t go.
Green, a sixth-round draft pick in 2012 out of New Mexico State, started five games last season as a rookie but he would be making his first start this season.
Green, inactive for six of the team’s first 13 games, will be severely tested by Baltimore’s big-play passing game.
“Jonte has not had to play too much of a defensive role this year, but he did last year,” coach Jim Schwartz told reporters following Saturday’s practice. “He’s a better player now than he was then. Whoever we put out there, we expect him to be able to get the job done.”
Chris Greenwood, a fifth-round pick in 2012 from Albion College, could be active for the first time in his career because of the depth problems at corner.
“It’s a little bit of a different situation for sure,” Schwartz said of Greenwood having to go from practice to game action. “He’s continued to work and he’s a better player now than he was early in the season.”
Baltimore linebacker Elvis Dumervil, who missed last week’s game because of an ankle injury, returned to practice Friday and is listed as questionable. Dumervil leads the Ravens with 9 ½ sacks.